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The Life of Andrew Murray of South Africa
Chapter XII. The Wellington Pastorate and the Huguenot Seminary

He wished to establish a school based on true principles. But in his mind these principles rested upon and grew out of what can only be described as a passionate conviction that education was, in a special sense, a work for God.—Edward Thring’s Biographer.

THE vale in which the town of Wellington is situated bore originally the name of Wagonmaker's Valley. It appears that about the middle of the eighteenth century, when “Father” Tulbagh ruled the Colony in true patriarchal style, an enterprising wagonmaker set up his anvil and forge at this spot, which all travellers from the distant, unknown north must needs pass in order to reach the capital. Hence the name “the Wagonmaker's Valley” During the course of the nineteenth century the valley of the Berg River, from the Paarl to Wellington, underwent rapid development. The two quiet villages awoke to new life and new activity. The clatter of mallets and the hum of machinery were heard, and busy workshops turned out in increasing quantities the waggons and Cape carts which were in so great demand by the farmers of the interior. At the present day the whole of the Berg River basin lying between the Drakenstein Range and the Paarl Mountain may be aptly called the Valley of the Wagonmakers.

At the time of Mr. Murray’s settlement Wellington must have been at the very acme of its material prosperity. It had been since November, 1863, the terminus of the railway from Cape Town, and the terminus it remained until 1875, when the line was extended as far as Ceres Road (now Wolseley).

All public and private conveyances, the light horse-waggon with its complement of passengers as well as the heavy transport waggon groaning under its weight of goods for the far interior, necessarily started from Wellington, or, when travelling in the opposite direction, made Wellington their objective. The road to the North led across the Draken-stein Mountains by the famous pass known, in honour of its engineer, as Bain’s Pass ; and from its summit the traveller looked down upon scenes of unrivalled beauty—waving cornfields, green vineyards, smiling orchards, old thatched homesteads with whitewashed walls, and beyond the village the gleaming waters of the Berg River, winding in and out among white sandy banks. “The picturesque town,” says a writer of later date, "has a most charming situation. To the east stands a range of lofty mountains, always rich in colour, and changing in the varying aspects of the day. Around, the land is covered with vineyards. Groves of fruit trees enclosing the pretty homes, arum lilies growing wild in great patches of purity, lilacs and peach trees aflame with colour, the exquisite freshness of the green foliage, the blue sky, brilliant sunshine, murmuring brooklets, combine to make one of the fairest of settings that mind of man can conceive.”

On assuming his duties as pastor of Wellington Mr. Murray found himself straightway immersed in a multitude of congregational problems and activities. The matters chiefly demanding attention were, the liquidation of the church debt, higher education and the training of teachers, local mission work, and the imminent introduction of the voluntary principle. This last matter demands a few words of explanation.

When the Batavian Government in 1806 surrendered the Cape to the English, the articles of capitulation (as has been already shown) imposed upon the new Government the duty “to maintain without alteration public worship as at present in use.” In fulfilment of this agreement the British Government for many years itself appointed ministers to the various congregations, and paid their salaries out of the Colonial treasury. But when for the Church Order of De Mist was substituted the famous Ordinance No. 3 of 1843, the Government was careful to explain that the financial support which it accorded the Dutch Reformed Church was purely voluntary. And as a matter of fact congregations established after (approximately) the year 1850 received no State support, since the Government speedily perceived that with the increase in the number of congregations, and the entrance of new denominations into South Africa, the stipends of the Colonial ministers were becoming a heavy drain upon the public purse. Twenty years later the number of congregations of all denominations had grown to more than four hundred, of which eighty received stipends amounting to £16,000, and the rest received nothing. This was felt to be not merely an anomaly, but an injustice; and a party of reform, at the head of which stood Mr. Saul Solomon, member of Parliament for Cape Town, began to agitate for what was known as the Voluntary Principle,— that is, the withdrawal of all State support, and the establishment of the congregations of each denomination upon the basis of the voluntary contributions of their members.

It cost the party of reform several years of strenuous toil before the principle—a very reasonable one—underlying their proposals was generally acknowledged. The arguments advanced by the stipendiary Churches were not based wholly on the impending loss of financial support. That alone was, they maintained, a matter of small import. “We have here to do,” wrote one minister, “with weightier interests than those that are purely monetary. The chief question with us may never be, ‘ Is it obligatory upon the Government— either on the ground of the conditions of capitulation or on any other ground—to provide for the support of our ministers? ’ The question is rather, ‘ Is the Government of this Colony to be a religious or an atheistic Government, is it to be Christian or heathen?' According to the Voluntary Principle, consistently applied, Government has no concern with Christianity as such: the religion of Mohammed has as much right to be heard in legislative matters as the religion of Christ; the Quran has an equal voice with the Bible.”

But in spite of arguments such as this, the pertinacity of Mr. Solomon gradually won over public opinion to his point of view. Year after year, notwithstanding defeats, session after session, he re-introduced his Bill, until in 1875 it passed both houses of the legislature and was placed upon the statute-book. No real injustice was done to any minister by the Bill. Ministers in receipt of Government stipends continued to draw them, and congregations which might have forfeited the grant through the death or departure of their minister were guaranteed the continuance of the subsidy for five years after the Bill became law. Mr. Murray, as one of those appointed under the old regime, drew his stipend during all the remaining years of his ministry; and even after his retirement continued to receive a portion of the pension due to him, from the public funds of the Colony.

In the pastoral work of his country congregation Mr. Murray introduced with the happiest results the method which he had employed in his Cape Town work, that, namely, of making mission work in the different wards of the parish the care of members of the congregation who were ready voluntarily to devote themselves to this labour of love. Though the Paris Evangelical Mission had been established in the Wagon-maker’s Valley since 1829, and was carrying on a great work among the descendants of the old slaves, there yet remained a large number of coloured people—day labourers, farm servants, household menials, herdsmen, and the like—who were still untouched by regular ministrations. Mr. Murray warmly interested himself in the spiritual condition of this neglected class, and sought to make some provision for their religious and their social needs. The manner in which he attacked this problem, and the success which attended his efforts to solve it, are thus described by a writer in the Kerkbode (13th July, 1872)—

As a result of the zealous labours of our minister, the number of coloured people who attend the Sunday-school in the Mission Hall on Sundays has now reached 120, with twelve teachers in rotation ; and in the evening school, which was commenced only a month ago, the number has risen to 200, old and young, with only eight teachers. May many more hearts be moved to render assistance in this most useful institution. In the out-districts of the congregation, too, our minister has so advanced matters that Sabbath-schools and evening schools for the coloured folk are held in almost every ward. May the Lord command His blessing on these labours!

In March, 1872, occurred the first separation in what had been hitherto an undivided family. Owing to the dearth of suitable high schools for girls in South Africa, the Murrays decided to send their two eldest daughters, aged fourteen and thirteen years respectively, to the Moravian Institution at Zeist in Holland. To these daughters, whose absence in Europe lasted for close on two years, the father wrote with regularity and at considerable length. A few of these letters are here reproduced, both for the little details which they impart about the home life of the Wellington Parsonage, and for the light which they cast upon the relations subsisting between father and children.

To his daughter Emmie.

How tenderly our hearts have been going out to you this morning, wondering where yon are and what you are feeling as you think of home. We have almost daily been following you on your travels, imagining where you would most likely be. . . . And now comes your birthday to remind you of home and of how we all will be thinking of you. Dearest child, we have been asking the Lord this morning, should you perhaps feel somewhat sad and desolate, to let you feel that He is near, and to give you a place near His own tender heart, so full of gentleness and love. May the blessed Lord Jesus indeed do it, and help you to begin the year with Him. And do you, my dear child, try to get and keep hold of the precious truth that there is no friend like Jesus, and that even when we feel naughty and foolish and sinful, He still loves us, and wants us to come to Him with all our troubles, that He may heal and comfort us.

How we shall be longing for your first letters from Zeist, to be able to form an idea of your mode of life. You must try and give us every particular about how you spend your time from hour to hour. Kitty wanted this morning specially to know whether you have a whole holiday on Saturday, or only a half-holiday, with another half-holiday on Wednesday. How are you allowed to spend them? Are all your walks in company, or may you go and wander in the woods alone? Tell us too what people you know and like. The gentleman who wrote to Mr. Huet that you would be welcome at his house is Mr. Oosterwijk Bruijn, who has a daughter at the School. Dr. Robertson told us that he knows them well, and that they are very kind people. Mrs. Oosterwijk Bruijn is of English descent. Tell us particularly about the children at the School, how many of them are English, and what they are like; also about your Sundays—are the services all in German, and do you profit by them? Tell us also what amount of time is devoted to Dutch.

We are getting on very comfortably here. The weather has during this month [April] been perfectly exquisite, and it has been quite an enjoyment to be out of doors. I have begun my gardening by trying to lay out paths. . . . Sometimes the thought comes to me how pleased I shall be when my children are back, and I can show them everything, and what a nice place I have succeeded in making of it.

When I was in Town last Mr. G. Myburgh asked me about Zeist, as he wanted perhaps to send Mary there. Ask the Director with my compliments please to send me half a dozen copies of their prospectus, both in Dutch and English, and an equal number of the Boys’ School, that I may be able to give information to people making enquiries. Miss Faure asked to be very kindly remembered to you. The Tennants were thinking of soon proceeding to Europe, but now that Parliament is sitting again there will be no idea of it for some months.

And now good-bye. Try to love the Lord Jesus much, and to live in the feeling of His nearness. I do pray that you and Mary may love each other very fervently, and be very gentle towards each other, true “helpers of each other’s joy,” as the Bible says.

To his daughter Mary.

You cannot think how fortunate we have been in getting our news of your arrival so speedily. How we have thanked God for His great kindness in arranging everything so comfortably for you, and in Aunt Mary’s plans fall in so nicely to suit your wants. We hope that by this time you are fairly settled to work at Zeist. We long very much to hear of your first beginnings there, and think the month very long that we must wait before we can hear from you. You must try to write a journal twice or three times a week: it will be the only way in which we can form an idea of how you spend your time. Even though some evenings you should only give an account of your day’s work—the classes you were in, the places you took, the books you used, and so on. And what I particularly want to know is how often you are allowed to see friends, and to whom you go.

I enclose a note to Mrs. Wallis. She lives a quarter of an hour’s walk from Zeist. I think you will have seen her before this, but at all events ask permission to walk over and take it to her. The note for Mr de Graaf of Amsterdam you must give to the Director or one of the teachers to post. He will probably come and see you some day.

Yesterday (loth May) was Papa’s birthday. We thought of how you would be thinking of us and of your usual morning work on my birthday of arranging the flowers and presents. Annie and Kitty gave me a nice cushion they had worked. Mama had ordered out a centre table for the study, but unfortunately the wrong one was sent. Mina gave me a nicely-worked text in golden beads with a gilt frame. The text I found very touching, because I know it comes from the heart of her mother and herself, and some of the other poor people to whom the work in Rogge Bay has been blessed,—“I thank my God upon every remembrance of you.” Much kindness was expressed on the occasion. When I returned thanks in church for all God’s mercies during the past year, I did not forget to mention His goodness in giving my children such a prosperous and happy arrival in England. May the prayers many people have offered for you be richly answered.

But yesterday was more than Papa’s birthday : it was Jesus’ corona-tion-day. O ! what joy for those who love Him to know that their Friend has been crowned with honour and glory, and clothed with all power in heaven and upon earth. I spoke much both yesterday and the previous Sunday of the blessedness of serving Jesus as the sure way to have His presence with us. I trust my dear Mary is trying to keep this one thought before her, that the value of education is to fit her for the service of the Lord Jesus, wherever He may have need of her hereafter.

To his daughters Emmie and Mary.

Mama will have written you that when your last letters arrived I was away at Swellendam, taking part in the induction of Mr. Muller. I had two of our churchwardens with me in a cart and four horses ; and we had a very pleasant trip by way of Worcester and Robertson, returning vid Genadendal and Caledon. In passing I saw Kitty and Annie at Worcester, and in coming back I brought with me Howson and Haldane, who had been at the Strand with their uncle John Neethling. Mama had been left at home with a very small party, as Miss McGill and Mina were both in Cape Town.

On reaching home I was delighted to hear that you were getting on happily. I hope that all the difficulties that trouble you will gradually smooth down. And remember that when difficulties won’t accommodate themselves to your wishes, there is nothing like your accommodating yourself to them. This is part of true wisdom, and in time takes away the unpleasantness. You refer to the fact that so much time is devoted to language and so little to literature. But if you think a little you will see that there is a good reason for this. Though spelling and grammar and the dull exercise of translation may not be very interesting, they are needful in more ways than one. For one thing, now at school is the only time to learn such things. The careful and exact application required at school is what you will not cultivate when you afterwards become your own teachers, whereas the easier and more pleasant paths of general literature can quite well be explored by yourselves alone afterwards. And then another thing,—the object of school life is not so much to impart a large amount of information, but to cultivate those powers by which you can afterwards gain information for yourself. And for the calling out of these powers, and the cultivation of the habit of application and careful thinking, those studies are useful in which the feeling of interest and pleasure appears to be sacrificed to a sense of duty. But you will understand this afterwards. When travelling up a hill last week, one of my companions was criticizing a road, and pointing out how much better it might have been made. When we got a little farther up the hill, we saw that he was wrong. People at the foot of a hill cannot understand the reason for all the windings of the road, but as they rise higher they discover them. You are just now only beginning to climb : follow in trust the path by which you are led : afterwards you will understand better than you do now.

So, too, with Dutch. In God’s providence you are a Dutch minister’s daughters, and may very possibly spend your days among Dutch people. Accept and use the opportunity God gives you for acquiring the language. It will render your stay in Holland all the more pleasant, and should your parents’ fond wishes ever be realized that you should be workers in the Lord’s vineyard, it will be of inestimable value to you. You need not fear of your English suffering. If it be needful and you desire it, we may arrange for your staying in England for some time before you return home. Write us full particulars of how far you are on with French, German and Dutch.

As to what you feel about Sunday the difficulty is greater. I want you to remember every Sunday morning that we are thinking of you, and praying the blessed Lord Jesus to help and comfort you during the day. We have done so and will do so still more earnestly. And if you are sometimes brought into difficulties by seeing true children of God indulging in conversation or other engagements which appear to you wrong, ask Jesus to help you to act up to the light of your conscience. If their conscience is not fully enlightened on the point, that may be an excuse for them, but cannot be for you. I am so anxious that you should have no want of nice Sabbath reading, that I wrote by this mail to Nisbet to send you a parcel at once. I have ordered some that you know already, that you may be able to lend them to others. I have for the same reason written to them to post you twelve of Bateman’s little hymn-book. Try and gather them on Sunday evening to join you in singing some of the old well-known tunes : they may prefer that to their ordinary conversation. Try and think, my dear little girls, that you are not too small to exercise influence. I think that when your uncle John and I went to Holland, though we were but very young, we did exercise some influence in this matter among our friends. Don t argue with others, and don t condemn them, but simply try to show that there is a way of being engaged in religious exercises all day without being sad or unhappy, and invite them to j oin you in such things as reading or singing. ...

From here you will have news enough from Mama and the children. I have been very much occupied with what we call our Home Mission work—in German they call it die innere Mission. We have been taking up our coloured people, arranging for Sunday and evening schools on the farms round about, under a strong feeling that a missionary never can reach our farm people properly, unless the masters be his helpers in his efforts to instruct the servants. We have received great encouragement in the willingness with which the white people have taken up the work, and the readiness with which the coloured folk attend the classes. I have great hopes that God may make it the means of bringing down a great blessing upon our congregation. Working for Him cannot be unblessed. Our people are going to put up a nice building at the bottom of our garden—the entrance just next to and in a line with Trengrove’s—for holding bazaars, working-parties and prayer-meetings. This is our first spring month, and everything is looking beautiful. . .

In 1872 Death twice entered the Parsonage at Wellington to shepherd home two of the lambs of the flock. These were not the first. In 1866, just before their departure for England, the Murrays had lost a little daughter of eight months old. But on this occasion two were taken from them in the course of the same year. Writing in October to tell the daughters of the passing of little Frances Helen, two and a half years of age, Mr. Murray pens these words of comfort and hope—

To his daughters Emmie and Mary.

My darling Children,—Your hearts will be very sad to hear the news which this mail brings you. And yet, not sad alone, I trust. For we have had so much comfort in seeing our precious little Fanny go from us, that we cannot but feel sure that He who has been with us will be with you too, and will let you see the bow He has set in the cloud —the bright light that our Precious Saviour has caused to shine even in the dark tomb.

Mama has written such a full account of all there is to tell about our little darling, that I do not think there is anything more for me to say. And I need not tell you how very beautiful and sweet is every memory we have of her. Since you left us she has been so very sweet, from early morning when she came tripping in to breakfast to say good-morning to Papa, and all through the day. How often she came to my room, just for a little play. Darling lamb, we shall see her again; and, as Mama said, we cannot refuse her to Jesus. Do you try too, my darling children, to say this. Hear Him asking whether you are willing that He should have her. And when you look at Him, and entrust her to

His love, give yourselves too, my dearest ones. We want Him to take not only her, but all of us, so that whether on earth or in heaven we may be one unbroken family, praising and serving and loving Him here in conflict, and there in victory and glory everlasting. . . .

With tenderest affection,

Your most loving Father.

In November of the following year a son was born to them, and of this glad event the father writes from Cape Town as follows (17th November, 1873)—

To his daughters Emmie and Mary.

How glad you will be to hear that God has given us another little one in the place of our dear Fanny and Willie. A little boy was born yesterday morning—a fine little fellow—and both mother and babe are very well. Our hearts are filled with gratitude and love.

We have still another blessing that has filled our hearts with gladness. On Saturday the two American ladies for. our Huguenot School at Wellington arrived here. The impression they make is most favourable. I am going out this afternoon with them to Wellington, to see about the building and the alterations that have to be made in it. It is quite wonderful what an interest has been awakened in our scheme for training ladies as teachers to work for Jesus. Just fancy, Aunt Ellie from Graafi-Reinet is going to stay for a year: Kitty Willie will probably come too: Miemie Neethling for certain. People say you ought to come also ; but as you are in Europe now, you must try and avail yourselves of the privileges Scotland may afford. May God implant deep in your hearts the desire to work for Him, and to seek the highest cultivation of all your powers with a view to being an instrument thoroughly furnished for God’s blessed work. I do not know what your musical powers may be, but in Scotland you must do your best with this. We shall need help in this direction at our Seminary.

We have had a very pleasant family gathering. On Thursday of last week we had my Mama and her ten children taken in a group. We do not yet know if it is at all successful. It was a pity that our number was not complete, as Uncle John had not come in. On Saturday we hope to have a Festival, like the one we had three years ago in the wood at Nooitgedacht near Stellenbosch.

Now, my dear children, I must conclude. I am writing in the midst of Synod business. We are not without anxieties about your change from Holland to Scotland, but we desire to leave everything in God’s hands. He has been so kind in other things that we do not doubt but that He will care for this too.

The reference in the above letter to “ the American ladies for our Huguenot School ” introduces us to the most important undertaking to which Mr. Murray put his hand in the early days of the Wellington pastorate. During the year 1872 he was giving serious thought to the old question of supplying the clamant need of more labourers in the Lord’s vineyard. The result to which his consideration of the subject led him was that the demand could only be met by going to the source whence the supply must be drawn, namely, the Christian homes of the country. In the Kerkbode of 1872 are to be found three papers entitled Onze Kinderen (Our Children), which, though unsigned, bear upon their face authentic marks of having come from Andrew Murray’s pen. In these articles, which afterwards circulated as tracts throughout the country, he makes an appeal, in his own irresistible fashion, to all Christian parents in the land, to consecrate their children to God's service, and thus assist in meeting the grave shortage of workers in the home and foreign field. From these epoch-making letters we venture to make a few extracts. After dwelling upon the urgent needs of the Church, and the responsibility which rests on all Christians to serve the cause of Christ with whatever strength and capacity they possess, he comes to the point in the following manner—

We wish just to impress upon your hearts that you can fulfil this duty best by offering your children for the service of Christ’s Church. Take the calling of the minister and the teacher. There are many who imagine that the Theological Seminary now abundantly supplies our needs, and that there is a danger of having more ministers than we can employ. This opinion is wholly groundless. We have at present only fourteen students in the Seminary, as against twenty last year. When we remember the calls that are now being issued by the vacant congregations of Rouxville, Bethulie, Bethlehem, Jansenville, Dutoitspan, Witzieshoek and Zoutpansberg, and the need for assistant ministers at Paarl and elsewhere, we must see that we are far from having a sufficient number of licentiates for the Church’s requirements. The members of our congregations ought to understand that the number of students in the Seminary is too small by half.

More than this. Those who think the matter over must own that it is not a good omen for the future of our Church that the higher education of our country should be almost wholly in the hands of persons who are not members of the D. R. Church, and even in some cases in the hands of non-Christians. In the course of time we shall feel the effects of this state of affairs. We should have such a large number of ministers that some could devote themselves to the work of teaching, and bear comparison, in respect of attainments and position, with those who come from Europe. This we cannot expect unless our believing Christians yield their children to the Lord’s service.

To this course I know that you will advance many objections. You have never known that it is your duty to consecrate your children to the service of the Gospel. You have always been satisfied with the usual excuse that one can serve God in every position in life. To every objection I have a simple answer—the Lord has a right to our children ; the Lord needs our children, and will Himself indicate to the believing soul which children He would have and can employ.

But, you say, suppose I have not the means. The gold and the silver are the Lord’s, and if you, dear parents, believingly offer your child to God, remember that He who accepts the sacrifice knows how to move the hearts of His people to find the necessary means. Poverty and inability, then, are no excuse for not presenting your children to the Lord. But how am I to act if my child has not the necessary abilities ? Even if that be the case, it is necessary for the parents to lay the matter before the Lord. " Not many wise ” is the rule of the Gospel. Should the child not be qualified to enter the ministry, our God, who has many offices in His holy temple-service, can make use of such an one as teacher or in another capacity. Hold fast to this one fact, that your child belongs to God, and that it remains your duty to ask, “Lord, hast Thou need of him?”

Perhaps your child is an only one. You long to see him continue the business in which you have yourself been engaged. You long to have him remain in the old home, to be the support and joy of your old age. Our God, you say, is no hard taskmaster, and will not demand this last sacrifice. No, God does not ask for more than your love deems Him worthy of : from a willing people He asks willing sacrifices. Therefore He stands before you, not to command, but waiting to know what impression His love has made upon you. He points to His only Son. For your sakes He spared not His own Son, but freely delivered Him up.

But, you plead, I have no sons,—the blessing which the Lord has bestowed upon me consists in daughters, and for them there is no place in the special service of God. In reply to this I desire first of all to say that even if there were no position in which woman could be specially employed in the service of God, nevertheless the consecration of your daughters to God can never be a vain and idle matter. The Lord has latterly shown that He can use women to perform great and important services for His Church; and if parents only will present their daughters to the Lord, He will know how to prepare a sphere of work for them—as intercessors for others, as labourers in His kingdom, in nursing the sick, or in caring for the poor. Parents who train their daughters with this end in view, in faith and prayer, will assuredly experience that their labour is not vain in the Lord.

There is, however, a special capacity in which women can labour for God, and because of its great importance I wish to say a word about it. I refer to the blessing and the utility of God-fearing lady-teachers. There is a great outcry, which is quite justifiable, on the dearth of lady-teachers in the towns and upon the farms of our land ; and many into whose hands is committed the instruction of our children, are not inspired by the love of God. At the same time there are many young women who, if they had but received some little instruction in this direction, would be a source of blessing and of joy, were they entrusted with the instruction of children. There are many, too, whose educational qualifications are sufficient, but who have never yet seriously considered the question, because their parents have never suggested it to them, of living and working for others. May the day soon dawn when not only those who regard teaching as a means of earning their daily bread will impart instruction to the young, but many of the young women of our Church will devote themselves to feeding the lambs, solely at the impulse of the love of Jesus.

During the Christmas vacation, which was spent at the seaside at Kalk Bay, Mr. Murray occupied himself in studying the life history and life work of Mary Lyon, the founder of the Ladies’ Seminary at Mount Holyoke in Massachusetts, U.S.A. The thoughts which were kindled by reading the life of this great educationalist were too precious to be kept to himself, and he therefore, as was his wont, at once set pen to paper, and wrote a series of articles entitled "Mary Lyon, and the Holyoke Girls’ School,” which were published in the Kerkbode at intervals during 1873. The opening words of the first article were these—

Discussions are just now afoot with reference to the establishment by the Church authorities of a Girls’ School in Cape Town, and not only so, but at various other centres attempts are being made to provide a training for our daughters. It is much to be desired that all such schools shall be actuated by the right spirit, so that our children may be won for our God and His Christ at the period of their greatest susceptibility to religious impressions.

Some time ago there was issued in England the biography of an American lady, Mary Lyon, who appears to have been a model of a Christian lady-teacher. She was marvellously successful in rousing her pupils to aim enthusiastically at uniting the highest intellectual development with the most decided piety. "First the kingdom of God, but after that—and after that most certainly—all science and knowledge," —such was her motto. To all who are interested in this question we recommend a perusal of Mary Lyon; or, Recollections of a Noble Woman.

Meanwhile I think it desirable to make a few extracts from her letters, with special reference to the manner in which she influenced the religious nature of her pupils. I am of opinion that every teacher who has laid this matter to heart will discover important suggestions which, with suitable modifications in accordance with capabilities and circumstances, may be safely followed. For the purpose of these extracts I make use, not of the above biography, but of a large work published some time back in America—Hitchcock: The Power of Christian Benevolence, illustrated in the Life and Labours of Mary Lyon (1851).

In relating the history of the founding of the famous Ladies’ Seminary at Mount Holyoke—the first institution of its kind in the United States for the higher education of women—Mr. Murray laid stress upon these principles by which Mary Lyon was guided: (1) the Seminary to be a strictly Christian institution, controlled by trustees who have in view the highest interests of the Church of Christ, and possessing as teachers women who are themselves inspired, and are able to inspire others, with a true missionary spirit; and (2) the domestic arrangements to be neat but simple, the household tasks to be performed by the pupils themselves, and the fees for board and instruction to be so low that girls of the middle class (hitherto debarred by the expense from obtaining higher education) shall receive instruction of equal quality with their more favoured sisters.

Mr Murray was not the man to rest satisfied with urging others to undertakings in which he would not himself engage. Eminently practical as he was, he was already evolving a scheme for the erection at Wellington of an institution similar to the historical Seminary of Mount Holyoke. He drew up a circular on the whole question, which in his estimation was the burning question of the hour, and invited the members of the Wellington congregation to discuss his proposals at a meeting to be held in the church on the 25th June. On that day the scheme was fairly launched, and the Huguenot Seminary, which was to exercise so beneficent and widespread an influence, was born. The circular (somewhat condensed) was of the following import—

The Huguenot School at Wellington.

At the commencement of our endeavours to establish this institution we think it desirable to set forth the reasons which have impelled us, the object which we aim at, and the principles to which with God’s help we hope to adhere, in founding this school. The chief consideration which has given birth to this undertaking is the need for efficient Christian instruction in our land. And in addition to the general dearth of capable teachers, it is clear to us that an institution in which young girls can be trained for educational work is absolutely indispensable.

To this was added the conviction, as a fruit of the preaching of God’s Word, that what we as a congregation have done for the kingdom of our Lord is as nothing in comparison with what we can and must do, and, we may almost say, in comparison with what we desire to do. There is no doubt in our mind that no labour in the interests of the kingdom of God will yield more glorious fruits than the work of an institution such as we propose. The acquaintance we have made, in the pages of the Kerkbode, with the life of Miss Lyon, and with her work at Mount Holyoke, has opened our eyes to the mighty and widespread influence for good which could be exercised by a school, founded in faith, for the training of lady-teachers as handmaidens of the kingdom. And no one can doubt but that the Church of South Africa stands in need of such teachers.

In addition to this another motive makes itself felt. In view of the possibility that only a small number of students may offer themselves in the beginning, we must acknowledge that a school for the training of lady-teachers alone would be attended with great expense. But by enlarging the scope of the school so as to make provision for the daughters of friends from the country and of parents from other districts of the Colony, and by uniting with that the instruction of our village girls, we shall be able to secure a first-class educational institution. In this manner we shall attain the aim of our school, while at the same time securing the best possible instruction for our local girls.

There is something else that encourages us to open this school. On the occasion of the Missionary Conference held here at Wellington last year, the desirability was expressed of raising some memorial in memory of the arrival on our coasts of those refugees who left home and friends for the sake of their Faith, in order to serve God here in liberty and in truth. And how can this purpose be better achieved than by establishing a school to their memory in these hallowed scenes, where the fugitive Huguenots first found rest, and first were enabled to serve God upon soil belonging to themselves? It is because we are confident that the Huguenot School at Wellington will help us to attain these sacred aims, that we now decide to arise and build. The God of heaven, He will prosper us.

It is our desire to have a building in which we can house thirty or forty girls, while at the same time we require school-rooms in which both they and the day-scholars can receive proper instruction. On our estimate we shall require a sum of not less than £2,000. As soon as £1,000 has been subscribed by this congregation, we shall feel free to commence with our undertaking. Nor have we any doubt that many friends from elsewhere will send us assistance, both on account of those dear forefathers whom God so greatly blessed, and on account of our descendants, who must be trained for Him. We are persuaded that support will be forthcoming for this institution from those in whose veins flows the blood of martyrs, and from those whose motive is love to the Lord Jesus and love to the children of this country ; and that the school erected with funds thus supplied will with the divine help be a source of blessing to the whole land.

What the Lord Himself has already done for us in this matter is an earnest of His further aid, and encourages us in the hope that He will open the hearts of His children for this cause. In reply to letters that were addressed to the Mount Holyoke Seminary nearly eight months ago, asking for a lady-teacher for this institution, we have lately received news that the request had awakened great interest, and was being taken into serious and prayerful consideration. And just the other day we learnt that two graduates of Holyoke have expressed their willingness to come over to us, both of them being considered as highly qualified for the work. The Directors of the Holyoke Seminary were of opinion that for such an important undertaking it was not wise to send only one, and they therefore offered us the services of two. This offer we have gladly accepted. And since the Lord has thus provided for our needs, and has moved the hearts of His children in America to interest and to prayer, we cannot but be filled with courage and thankfulness. The Lord will perfect that which concerneth us!

It need hardly be said that, under the inspiration and earnestness of their pastor, the members of the Wellington congregation responded heartily to this appeal. Not only was the scheme approved, but before the meeting separated the sum of £500 was subscribed. Within a few days this amount was increased to £800, and four months later Mr. Murray was able to report that the minimum amount agreed upon had been passed, and that the Wellington community had contributed the sum of £1,150. The further course of events is described in a second circular to the congregation, issued by Mr. Murray on the 25th October, from which we extract the following—

As soon as we saw that we should not lack for money, we interested ourselves in endeavouring to procure the necessary buildings. In this matter also we cannot but acknowledge the Lord’s unmistakable guidance. Many were greatly averse to building in this expensive time, and the Committee therefore attempted to secure a suitable property by purchase. But the building about which all were agreed that it was adapted to our needs was not procurable. The majority then decided to purchase the next best property, and negotiations were nearly completed when this offer also fell through. The Committee then returned to the original project of putting up the needful buildings, and was making all arrangements with plans and specifications, when the property we desired to have was unexpectedly offered to us. After brief negotiations we found ourselves in possession of the property of Mr. Schoch, which formerly belonged to Dr. Addey, for the sum of £1,600 buildings and ground to be handed over to us on the 24th October.

In the meantime we have new reason for gratitude in the advices which have reached us concerning our lady-teachers from Holyoke, Misses Ferguson and Bliss. The testimonies which we have received have filled us with confidence that they are the very persons we need for our institution, both as regards piety and culture, and especially as regards their ability to undertake the control and training of future teachers, so as to form them for the sacred art of influencing the children of our country. They were preparing to leave America on the 20th of September, and England on the 15th of October, and we hope to have them with us on the 15th of November ; so that we may confidently announce the opening of our school for the second week of January, 1874.

The whole of the circular, from which the above extract is taken, was publicly read at a great gathering of friends and supporters of the institution, held on the 25th October. The Synod of 1873 was then in session, and as a large number of well-wishers had expressed their intention of being present, a special train was chartered to convey them from Cape Town to Wellington. The Kerkbode, which is our chief source of information on all matters pertaining to Church and school, gives us the following account of the proceedings—

The Huguenot School at Wellington.—The building in which this institution for the training of young ladies, and especially of lady-teachers, is to be established, was opened with great solemnity on the 25th October. The special train brought over a very large concourse of visitors, among whom were to be found almost all the members of the Synod, while from all parts interested friends arrived in private vehicles. At two o'clock the guests assembled on the open space behind the school-building. Dr. P. E. Faure, Moderator of Synod, opened the proceedings with a short votum, read a portion from the Psalms, gave out a hymn, and then commended the institution to God’s gracious care in a sincere and heartfelt prayer. Rev. A. Murray thereupon read forth the circular which has already appeared in the Kerkbode. The friends present then dispersed in order to partake of refreshments and view the building and grounds. The property is well known. It was formerly the residence of the late Dr. Addey, and then passed into the hands of the Anabaptists, from whom the D. R. congregation of Wellington has purchased it for £1,600, though another £800 will be required to fit it for the purpose for which it is to be used. The chief building is large, airy and well-built. The lower storey will be arranged as schoolrooms, and the upper storey will serve as bedrooms for the pupils, of whom a large number can be accommodated.

After the visitors had re-assembled, Professor Hofmeyr delivered an inaugural discourse, in which he described the institution as a sign of the times, and an encouraging indication that the Church had awakened to a sense of its heavy responsibility towards the daughters of the congregation. These young girls would now have the opportunity of obtaining an education adapted to the needs of the day, and, if they desired it, the opportunity of learning how to impart their attainments to others. Several other speakers uttered words of congratulation and encouragement—the Revs. Stegmann, senior, du Flessis, Charles Murray, Geo. Morgan, Steytler, J. H. Hofmeyr, Dr. Robertson, Luckhofi and Fraser —whose addresses were eminently suited to the occasion. Rev. Morgan exhibited a relic of the old Huguenots, namely, a piece of the wall of the original building which had served as church and school for the first French fugitives at French Hoek. After all who desired to do so had spoken, Mr. Murray, in the name of the congregation of Wellington, returned thanks to the visitors for the interest they had displayed ; to which compliment Dr. Faure replied by thanking congregation, consistory and minister for the pleasure which the proceedings had afforded them, and the hospitality which they had enjoyed. Rev. A. A. Louw then closed the celebration with prayer.

The formal opening of the Seminary took place on the 19th of January, 1874, in the presence of a large and appreciative assemblage of people. In his address on this occasion Mr. Murray dwelt upon the special blessings which had attended the inauguration of the new undertaking, not the least of which was the large number of girls who had intimated their intention to enter the institution. From all parts of the country young ladies, who in most cases had already passed the ordinary educational standards, were arriving at Wellington in order to qualify as teachers, and thus to fit themselves for work in some corner of the Lord’s vineyard. Though the main building of their Seminary could accommodate forty boarders, they had accepted the applications of no less than fifty-four young ladies, who had come from such widely-distant centres as Cape Town, Durban, Philadelphia, Malmesbury, Riebeek West, Paarl, Stellenbosch, French Hoek, Villiersdorp, Worcester, Beaufort West, Richmond, Graaff-Reinet, Middelburg and Somerset East. As the present accommodation was utterly inadequate, a wing would h„.^ to be immediately added to the existing building. In order to raise the funds necessary to effect this extension and to extinguish the debt still resting upon the institution, he proposed undertaking a tour of some months’ duration, to lay the cause of Christian normal education before the various congregations of the Colony. Such in brief were the contents of Mr. Murray’s pronouncement at the opening ceremony.

The collecting tour, upon which he started on the 16th February, lasted for full four months, and was successful beyond his most sanguine expectations. He was able to visit some thirty congregations, and the net result of his efforts was the sum of £2,300 for the Seminary. This was most encouraging. And yet, as Mr. Murray was careful to point out, the financial proceeds were not the most satisfactory fruit of his journey. He counted it an inexpressible privilege to have had the opportunity of pleading the cause of Christian education before members of the D. R. Church in all parts of the country, to have been assured time and again of their hearty approbation and goodwill, and to have found thirty young men and an even greater number of young women ready and eager to be trained for the work of instructing the rising generation. These were results upon which he laid much heavier stress, and for which he rendered much more abundant thanks to God.

Mr. Murray’s return from this successful tour was the occasion for a signal outburst of gratitude and affection on the part of his congregation. Even the brief chronicle of this event in the pages of the Kerkbode cannot wholly conceal the joy and enthusiasm with which the devoted people welcomed back their beloved pastor—

Our respected minister returned home on Friday last, after an absence of four months. Shortly after midday vehicles, numbering in all more than one hundred, began to roll from all quarters towards Bain’s Kloof, and at half-past one a large crowd had already assembled. Precisely at two o’clock the reverend gentleman made his appearance, accompanied by some of the churchwardens who had proceeded still further to meet him. As soon as Mr. Murray had descended from the cart, the assemblage sang Dat’s Heeren zegen op u daal (God’s blessing rest upon your head), after which the Rev. S. J. du Toit, the assistant minister, presented him with an extensively-signed address from his flock, and handed him a purse of £50 on behalf of the sisters of the congregation. In replying to this address Mr. Murray appeared to be much affected, and asked the friends to kneel down while Mr. du Toit offered prayer, after which he himself poured out his heart in a most sincere and touching manner, thanking God for the protection, assistance and blessing which he had experienced on his journey. Two other addresses, from the scholars of the Blauw-vallei and Boven-vallei schools respectively, were also presented, upon which the cavalcade proceeded towards the village. At the entrance to the parsonage an arch of honour had been erected, around which were grouped the young ladies of the Huguenot Seminary and the pupils of the other local schools. The school-children welcomed Mr. Murray with a hymn, while the Seminary ladies offered an address, to which he replied in feeling terms. One of the young ladies carried a flag with the motto Hosanna, and the banner of another breathed the prayer God bless our pastor. Mr. Murray’s dwelling was decorated about the doors with garlands and flowers, and with the motto Welcome home, which was worked in orange blossoms and can only be described as exquisite. The cart and horses with which Mr. Murray performed his journey were subsequently sold for £go, and this amount was also handed over to him as a mark of gratitude and esteem.

The rapid increase in the number of pupils made imperative, not merely the addition of a new wing, but the erection of a new building. In November, 1874, the foundation of a second edifice was laid, which was ready for occupation in the following year. On Tuesday, the 27th July, 1875, a concourse of nearly two thousand people at the Seminary grounds participated in a ceremony which marked another stage in the remarkable growth of this institution. Seven ministerial colleagues testified by their presence on that occasion to their appreciation of Mr. Murray’s efforts on behalf of education, while congratulatory letters and telegrams were received from many others whom circumstances prevented from being personally present. The report of the Committee—drawn up, beyond doubt, by Mr, Murray’s own hand—contains the following paragraphs—

Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, but unto Thy name give glory, for Thy mercy and for Thy truth's sake. For the fifth time we may to-day invite our friends to gather with us around this text from the Word of God, and to honour the Lord with reverence and trust in the work which we have had to perform for Him. The first occasion was the 25th of June, 1873, when, in laying our projects before you at our first meeting in the church, we selected this text as motto. Next, on the 25th October, when, at the time when the Synod was in session in Cape Town, we took possession of the property we had purchased, in the presence of so many ministers of our Church. Three months later, in January, 1874, we were privileged to meet again, to dedicate our first building and to commence our educational labours. Nine months subsequently, in November, 1874, we assembled again to laythe foundation of our new building. And to-day, by the good hand of our God over us, we may unite with our friends in taking possession of the new buildings in the name of the Lord, and solemnly dedicating them to Him, while undertaking in His strength the work which must be accomplished.

Inclusive of £500 paid for the additional piece of ground purchased, the two buildings and the properties on which they stand have cost us the sum of £7,500, of which £3,500 is a debt which has still to be paid off. Only last Sunday our minister appealed to the congregation to increase its great gift for this cause. When there was nothing to be seen, and everything was, humanly speaking, a matter of extreme uncertainty, the congregation had contributed, as an act of faith, £1,000 for the first building; and now that the Lord had so abundantly blessed the work as to give us a second building, would the congregation not double its gifts, and raise its subscription to £2,000? The gift of gratitude at the consummation ought not to be less than the gift of faith at the commencement of the undertaking.

Another blessing which we should have in remembrance is God’s gracious provision for our need of teachers. A few days after the laying of the foundation-stone of our new building we were able to welcome our third and fourth lady-teachers from America—Miss Wells and Miss Bailey—who were to stand at the head of our primary department; and a month or two later we welcomed Miss Spijker from Holland, to undertake instruction in the Dutch language. Owing to the experience gained by Miss Bliss during the last eighteen months, it was deemed better that she should have the supervision of the primary department ; so that we noV have Miss Ferguson and Miss Wells, with Miss Spijker, in the new building with the supervision of fifty secondary scholars, and Miss Bliss and Miss Bailey in command of the primary department, with forty pupils under their charge. More than ever before do we now understand that the most precious gifts which the exalted Lord bestows upon His Church consist in persons whom He has prepared and condescends to use in the service of His kingdom. May we learn to ask these from Him in prayer whenever the need for such fellow-labourers arises.

For the scholars whom He has sent us we must thank God as much as for the teachers. In our second circular of October, 1873, we stated: “It is our desire to have from the very outset a class of young women who have already left school, or who have taught in small schools before, and who wish to be instructed for a year or more in the art of teaching and moulding the young.” We gratefully bear witness that the Lord has richly fulfilled this desire, and has supplied us with a number of pupil-teachers to whose co-operation this establishment is greatly indebted. They have assisted in giving the right tone to the institution, and so in stamping upon it for the future the character which we are eager to see it bear.

In conclusion we must still make mention of something of which it is most difficult to speak, and which yet yields us the greatest material for gratitude, and that is the blessing—a blessing for all eternity—with which the Lord has gladdened our hearts. This alone we feel constrained to say, that the Spirit of God has dwelt under our roof from the very commencement, and that many who came to us without knowing Jesus, have here learnt to know and love Him, while those who knew Him before have learnt to recognize how blessed a thing it is to consecrate the heart to Him entirely. We can hardly give utterance to the feelings which master us when we think of God’s goodness in this matter. We can only make this appeal to you, Friends, let us magnify the Lord together, and together let us exalt His holy name.

So successful an undertaking as the Huguenot Seminary naturally attracted widespread attention, and visitors from all parts found their way to Wellington in order to study the methods of Christian instruction and normal training there in vogue. Among the overseas visitors who called there in the course of 1876 was that famous writer of boys’ books, Mr. R. M. Ballantyne, who in his Six Months at the Cape has left us the following impressions of his visit—

At Wellington stands the Huguenot Seminary, founded by the Rev. Andrew Murray, brother of the professor at Stellenbosch. It is so named because of being situated in a district of South Africa which was originally peopled by French refugees. Although there is, I understand, to be a theological department ere long for the training of young men for the ministry, this seminary is at present chiefly devoted to girls.

The design of the seminary is to give its pupils a sound education, and at the same time so to mould and form the character that the young ladies may-go out with an earnest purpose in life, and thus be the better fitted for any sphere to which God in His providence may call them. So says the prospectus of 1875. It also sets forth that another design is to train teachers who may go out to meet, in some measure, the pressing wants of the country. Assuredly these pressing wants will be met, and that speedily, for common sense is the prevailing characteristic in the management, and “faith that worketh by love" seemed to me to be the prevailing power among teachers and pupils. There is much talk in Great Britain just now about the higher education of women. Let those who talk come out to South Africa, and they shall see their pet schemes carried out and in full swing at Wellington.

It chanced to be examination day—the last day of the session—when I arrived, so that I had a good opportunity of seeing and hearing the results of the year's course. The teachers—nearly all of them American ladies brought over, as I understood it, expressly to apply their system —were seated in a row in front of the class. Order and method prevailed everywhere; teachers and pupils knew their duty thoroughly. There was no ordering, no loud and authoritative commanding. It was not necessary. A nod from the principal, Miss Ferguson, or a quiet remark, was sufficient to set the machinery in motion. The pupils acted with the quietness and precision of soldiers, but without their stiffness. Let it not be supposed that the system involved rigidity. The girls were as natural, graceful and unconstrained as one could wish them to be. I cannot go into the minutiae of that examination. Suffice it to say that I recognized the same wise, common-sense elements at Wellington that had aroused my admiration at Stellenbosch ; but there was more to be seen and heard at Wellington, because there, as I have said, was the training of teachers, and the examination to which they were subjected was very severe. They were not only questioned closely on, as it appeared to me, almost the entire circle of human knowledge—including in their course algebra, geography, history, botany, rhetoric, natural philosophy, astronomy, geology, mental philosophy, analysis, composition, French, Latin, German, moral philosophy, essays, and the study of the Bible—but were also made to explain how they would proceed to teach children committed to their care, and to give their reasons for the methods adopted. But the beauty of this system became more apparent to me when I was told that these same girls (of whom there are above ninety in the two establishments) had to cook their own dinners, and make their own beds, and, in short, perform all the domestic duties of the households, except the “dirty work,” for which latter only one indoor servant was retained for each house. And yet these girls’ hands were soft, white and lady-like, and their fingers taper, and with these same fingers some of them paint beautifully, and many play the piano with considerable taste and power.

I saw these girls afterwards out in their garden, chatting and laughing heartily under the apricot trees, eating the golden fruit—think of that, apricots in December !—and afterwards I saw them at their tea-table eating bread and not butter—no, the heat, or something else, rendered that commodity scarce at the time in the Huguenot Seminary—eating bread and sheep’s-tail fat! I tried it myself, and can pronounce it good and wholesome, though I am not sure that I found it palatable. After tea I saw them quietly collecting and washing the cups and saucers, and as I looked at their busy hands and pretty faces and healthy, graceful figures, and reflected that they had been assembled there from every district of the country, and would in process of time be scattered back to the regions whence they came, to become loving and learned centres of Christian influence, I fell into a meditative mood. I thought of Lord Carnarvon and Mr. Froude, and the Molteno Government and the Paterson opposition. I pondered the fierce battle of the Outs and the Ins, with their incomprehensible differences and their divergencies of opinion and sentiment. Then I reflected that with all their differences these various men and bodies seemed to be united and agreed in at least one opinion and on one point, namely, that there is a great and grand future in store for South Africa.

Awaking from my reverie I said to myself, "Yes, you are right; and here, methinks, in this seminary you have the seed being planted and watered which shall one day cover this land with ripe and rich fruit, and which will tend powerfully to bring about that great future. For these girls will one day guide your sons to the loftiest heights of physical, mental and moral philosophy, and your daughters into the widest spheres of woman’s vocation, and your servants to the profoundest depths of domestic economy,—and that not merely because knowledge is pleasant in itself and profitable alike to individuals and to communities, but because of their love for the dear Saviour, who has redeemed them from the power of ignorance as well as of sin, and whose blessed teachings form the groundwork of whatever superstructure may be raised at the Huguenot Seminary of Wellington.”

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